An expungement reopens your criminal case, dismisses and sets aside the conviction, and recloses the case without a conviction. In effect, you are no longer a convicted person. However, the case record itself will still exist, and the expungement will appear on your record.
- You must qualify as a low income individual.
- You must physically live in either Riverside or San Bernardino County.
- IELLA is able to help U.S. citizens, legal residents, and non-legal residents.
- If your case is opened in Riverside or San Bernardino County, but your reside outside of Riverside or San Bernardino County, we will not be able to assist you.
- You must have a legal matter that we assist with. If you are uncertain whether your case is an acceptable case, please contact us for confirmation before attending a clinic. Briefly describe your legal matter to our staff and have your court case number, if applicable and available. We do not provide legal advice over the phone, the staff member that you will be speaking to cannot advice you about your case.
- Since we receive federal and non-federal funds such as from United Way and the State Bar of California, we must adhere to their specific requirements. We do not disclose our eligibility guidelines.
- If you have a case that we can help with, you must attend a legal aid clinic to determine if your are eligible for our services.
- You will be asked to sign an Asset and Debt Acknowledgement and Declaration of Income under penalty of perjury that the information you provided was correct.
- We do not determine eligibility over the phone.
Free services are provided. Your donations are highly appreciated.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER NOTICE: The information provided is not legal advice. Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt by you does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Although efforts are made to ensure that the answers are correct, it cannot and does not offer any warranty, express or implied, that the answers contained herein are accurate statements of law. Information is provided for informational purposes only.
Can I attach letters explaining my situation or my improved life?
It is often a good idea to attach a declaration stating why you want the engagement and explaining your situation in life. In this declaration, you may want to discuss:
- Your plans for the future The reasons you offended, and how your life is different today than it was when you offended
- How the conviction has hurt your employment chances
- If you have received any training or education
- Any occurrence in your life that changed how you interact with your community Any 12-step or religious affiliations you have.
- All declarations submitted to the court must be true and accurate. Declarations are one page long, and may be typed or handwritten.
- Letters from employers, clergy, or other community members can be convincing, but should not be attached to your petition. You may provide these to the judge at your hearing.
Can I expunge multiple convictions at the same time?
Yes, you can file several petitions for engagement simultaneously. You will need to file separate Petitions and Orders for each conviction.
What if I have changed my name since my conviction?
Fill out the forms with the name under which you were convicted. Sign the forms with your current name.
Am I required to be Hispanic to be eligible for your program?
Absolutely not. IELLA assists all individuals regardless of ethnic background. However, in order for us to assist you with document preparation, you must qualify as being LOW INCOME.